UBS Singapore to take up entire office space at redeveloped Park Mall

Thu, Apr 18, 2019

DEVELOPER SingHaiyi Group and its joint-venture (JV) partners - Suntec Reit and Haiyi Holdings - on Wednesday announced that UBS Singapore has signed on to take up all the office space at the redeveloped Park Mall building, confirming a report by The Business Times (BT) on Apr 1 that the Swiss lender was mulling a consolidation of its Singapore office footprint.

Located at 9 Penang Road, the property is currently undergoing redevelopment and is on track to be completed in the fourth quarter this year, SingHaiyi said.

UBS Singapore will take up 381,000 sq ft of net lettable area which spans eight levels across two towers. It plans to move to the 10-storey Grade A office building in the second half of 2020.

Besides UBS Singapore, the new building has also garnered "strong interest" from potential retail tenants, including food and beverage outlets as well as ancillary services, the company added.

Haiyi Holdings is a wholly-owned entity of SingHaiyi Group's major shareholders, its group managing director Celine Tang and her husband Gordon Tang. SingHaiyi Group and Haiyi Holdings each holds a 35 per cent stake in the JV, while Suntec Reit owns the remaining 30 per cent.

The new building is located near the prime shopping belt Orchard Road and Dhoby Ghaut MRT station. It has 15,000 sq ft of retail space and an extended 99 years leasehold which will expire on Dec 7, 2115.

Said Mrs Tang: "9 Penang Road marks SingHaiyi's first foray into commercial property redevelopment, and a strategic springboard to expand our brand and track record in commercial and retail property development."

Separately, UBS Singapore's country head, August Hatecke, noted that the move will allow UBS Singapore to bring its employees working at One Raffles Quay and Suntec City under one roof to enhance collaboration, as well as offer new capacity for future growth in the Asia-Pacific region.

UBS has close to 4,000 employees in Singapore across its businesses, and the new premises will also house the UBS University, which will provide training and development programmes for its staff within the region.

In a circular sent out to staff on Wednesday and seen by BT, UBS noted that Singapore is a "strategic priority" for the group, and that the future-ready workplace with the latest connectivity and health facilities will offer an "ideal environment" to enhance the way its employees work and collaborate.

"As sole tenant, UBS Singapore will have full control of building security, which will feature a single-entry system including facial recognition technology," it said.

The bank added that the new building's energy-efficient construction will also help it to operate in line with the "highest environmental standards".

SingHaiyi shares closed flat at 9.5 Singapore cents on Wednesday, while units in Suntec Reit closed at S$1.89, down one Singapore cent or 0.53 per cent.